There are a ton of reasons why being a parent is hard but for me, personally, feeding my family is one of the biggest challenges!  Finding the balance of moderation and teaching it to my kids is so important.  Staying on track when life gets busy – next to impossible.  Sifting through the never ending onslaught of information regarding nutrition – overwhelming.  When I feel like things are spinning out of control – I get back in touch with the following:

  1. Give Yourself A Break;  Keeping up with life’s busy schedule and feeding our kids (and ourselves!) healthy, satisfying meals is a never ending struggle.  When you feel like you’ve maybe lost some footing in keeping up before you start to chastise yourself, take a deep breath and remind yourself that you’re doing the best that you can.
  2. Ditch the Food Morality;  Nothing and I mean NOTHING makes staying on track more difficult then acting like what we eat is going to determine our fate at the pearly gates!  Just eat real food.  As often as possible.  Gluten free, Paleo, Vegan, Raw Vegan…. it doesn’t matter it doesn’t make you better or worse.  What matters is that you listen to your bodies needs and you pay attention to what your family needs!  Paleo is not going to work for your 6 year old if they don’t want to eat meat!  The added pressure we put on ourselves (not to mention the messaging to our children with “bad” and “good”) will only lead to burn-out.  The expectation of “Eating Perfectly” can lead to feelings of deprivation (hello cookie binge) and is quite likely – not sustainable.
  3. Fail To Plan – Plan To Fail; I do grocery shopping and food prep on 2 different days (I usually shop on Friday and prepare food on Sunday).  Set aside time on Sunday to slice and dice what veggies you can, make smoothie freezer packs, hardboil some eggs, etc., etc.,  Find double-duty recipes – make a big batch of meatballs for Swedish Meatballs on Monday and Meatball Subs on Wednesday.  Roast a Chicken on Sunday and have chicken salad Sandwiches all week.  Don’t forget to make chicken stock!  Do enough on Sunday so that all you really have to do is “Assemble” your meals throughout the week.  Start a meaningful relationship with your Crockpot!  I try to make at least 2 freezer meals on Sunday to help during those really, really crazy busy times! Chili, Lasagna, Soups….  so nice to have on hand.
  4. Get A Pinterest Account (Seriously);  If you don’t have a Pinterest account… get one.  Pinterest has been by far my most valuable tool in helping plan meals, find new recipes, get out of the ruts of making the same stuff over and over again.  It’s so easy to organize things here and go back later.
  5. Get The Kids Involved;  it will hurt now, I know, teaching a 5 year old how to measure flour or break an egg…. agony.  In the long run?  It will pay off and you will have real little helpers that actually eat what you serve because they are invested and “helped” create that meal!  Healthy eating doesn’t just “happen” for people – they need to be taught.  Our Sunday food prep day is actually one I look forward to – we bond over finding new recipes – the successes and failures of them.  We enjoy our big fancy “Sunday Supper”.  It’s really one of my favourite things about being a Mom.

Please feel free to share your tips and tricks, trials or tribulations! We’re all in this together!healthy eating(1)